Forthcoming Event

1) Webinar on “Business Opportunities in the Republic of Guinea”


MASSA will be organising a webinar on the “Business Opportunities in the Republic of Guinea” in the first quarter of 2021. 

Further details on this webinar will be forwarded to MASSA members via our weekly circular once it is finalised.  Kindly contact MASSA Secretariat at Tel: +603-2078 3788 or email: mail@massa.net.my or massakl@gmail.com if you require further information on this webinar.


 

Information on the Republic of Guinea 

Conakry, Capital of Guinea


GENERAL INFORMATION

CAPITAL: Conakry
COASTLINE: 333 km²
LANGUAGES: French (official), Guerzé, Kissi, Koniagui, Koniaka, Kpèlè, Malinké, Poular, Soussou, Toma
POPULATION :

 

 

10.7 million in 2015,

15 million (2025 estimate)

POPULATION GROWTH: 2.62% (2016 estimate)
ADMINISTRATIVE SET-UP: 8 regions
INDEPENDENCE: 2 October 1958
CURRENCY:

 

 

 

 

Guinea Franc-GNF (31/12/2016)

1 Dollar US = 9 225,31 GNF

1 Euro = 9 643,22 GNF

1 Yuan Chinois = 1 326,54 GNF

GDP:

GDP BY SECTOR: 

 

GROWTH RATE: 

INFLATION : 

EXPORTS: 

IMPORTS: 

 

 6.6 billion USD (2014)

Agriculture (18%), Industries (41.4%), Services (40.6%) (2014)

5.2% (2016 estimate)

8.4 % (July, 2016)

1,573.7 million (2015)

2,138.6 million (2015)

MAJOR TRADE PARTNERS (EXPORT RATE): South Korea (33%), India (25%), and Spain (8%) (2015)

 

MAJOR TRADE PARTNERS (IMPORT RATE): China (32%), Netherlands (19%), and India (7%) (2015

 

 

General Information on the Republic of Guinea

 

Guinea is endowed with abundant mineral resources, an agriculture-friendly environment with more than 6.2 million hectares of arable land and a hydroelectric potential of around 6,00 megawatts. Guinea also has the world’s largest reserves of bauxite (40 billion tons), the world’s richest iron ore (over 60% content), a reserve estimated at 20 billion tons that can be mined for 100 years. The sub-soil is rich in other minerals such as diamonds and base metals.

The Government of Guinea has been carrying on reforms since 2015 to achieve the following key objectives:

1) Develop Africa’s largest mining sector
2) Build small and large hydroelectric dams to generate sufficient energy
3) Develop infrastructure
4) Build modern cities
5) Release the country’s agro-business potential to achieve food self-sufficiency and become
a breadbasket for the West African region.

Priority sectors are:

a) Energy and hydraulics
b) Agriculture
c) Infrastructure
d) Mining
e) Post, telecommunications, IT and digital economy
f) Industry
g) Trade
h) Tourism

The Government of the Republic of Guinea would like to attract strategic partners and business private sector investments to work with them to achieve the above objectives in the priority sectors outlined above. 

MASSA is collaborating with APIP-Guinea and Mr Ismael Nabe, Advisor to the Prime Minister of Guinea in charge of Public-Private Partnership, Investments and Partnerships with Asia, to organise this webinar to explore the many business opportunities available in the Republic of Guinea.

 


 2) EXPO 2020 Dubai from 1 October 2021 – 31 March 2022


The EXPO 2020 Dubai is a World Expo hosted by Dubai in the United Arab Emirates.  It will be held from 1 October 2021 to 31 March 2022. 

This exhibition will be held at the  Dubai Exhibition Centre, Dubai, United Arab Emirates covering an area of 438 hectares. This is the largest Expo ever held in the region.  It is set to welcome 190 participating countries and millions of visitors from across the globe.  This international exhibition will provide great opportunities for businessman wishing to expand their businesses overseas. 

For more information on this Expo 2020 Dubai, please log onto website: www.expo2020dubai.com

Diary of Events

1)   Webinar on “Reconnect: Hong Kong – Malaysia

       Partnership” on 24 September 2020


 

The Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) Malaysia and The Commerce and Economic Development Bureau of the Hong Kong SAR Government jointly organised the webinar on “Reconnect: Hong Kong-Malaysia Partnership” on 24 September 2020. 

Keynote Speakers at this webinar are Hon. Dato’ Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali, Senior Minister, MITI Malaysia and Hon. Mr Edward Yau, Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development of Hong Kong.

Panelists at the webinar include The Hong Kong Trade Development Council, The Chinese Manufacturers’ Association of Hong Kong, Sense Time, Value Partners Group and representatives from the Federation of Malaysian Manufacturers (FMM), Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (MATRADE) and Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA).                         
Government and business leaders from both the countries provided and shared an insight on the emerging opportunities with the application of innovation and technology, as well as in the trade and investment fields under the “new normal” to all the participants. This webinar also provides an opportunity for enterprises, manufacturers, professional services and start-ups to explore opportunities for collaboration and partnership in braving the challenges ahead in this COVID-19 pandemic.

 

Malaysia Lighthouse Program by MIDA

Malaysia Lighthouse Program by MIDA


 

The World Economic Forum (WEF) in collaboration with McKinsey launched the Global Lighthouse Network in 2018, a research collaboration to bring together the most advanced factories in the manufacturing world for a cross-company learning journey.

MIDA has taken a proactive step to embrace an innovative initiative by introducing Malaysia’s Lighthouse Project”, a concept of modelling companies that have embraced digital manufacturing and globalisation 4.0 in their business model and their entire supply chain. In general, the Lighthouse Project consist of industry players that have taken 4IR/Ind4.0/Smart Manufacturing technology from pilot to integration at scale, thus achieving significant financial and operational benefits. 

 

The term “lighthouse” denotes that these factories can act as beacons to guide their supply chain and others that are still looking to apply technologies like artificial intelligence, additive manufacturing and advanced analytics as well as overcome challenges in upgrading existing production.

MIDA envisions for Malaysia to have our own model factories to be recognised as our “Lighthouses”. Through this, we will embark on a unique learning journey that will benefit Malaysia’s production ecosystem.

The objectives of the Lighthouse initiatives by MIDA are to:-

– Drive the Industry 4WRD initiatives towards reality;

– Reposition Malaysia to be among the top Global Manufacturing nation with the latest technology adoption and innovation;

– To assist existing sector to become a Lighthouse.

 

Benefits of Lighthouse Model

-Technology can create a better, cleaner world through new levels of efficiency in manufacturing;

-It provides not just incremental but rather, a step change in resetting benchmarks for operational and financial key performance indicators (KPIs);

-Address rapid emergence of ecological constraints, balancing global resource consumption against availability, avoiding challenging impacts on ecosystems, human health and well-being associated with global climate change;

-Successful companies will act as beacons to guide the others projects/companies in Malaysia in transforming and overcoming challenges in upgrading existing production systems.

Source:  Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA) – www.mida.gov.my


 

Appended below is the Malaysia Lighthouse Project guidelines for your information.


Contact Details on Malaysia Lighthouse Program 

Mr Norhizam Ibrahim
Director
Advanced Technology and Research & Development Division

Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA)
MIDA Central
No. 5, Jalan Stesen Sentral 5
Kuala Lumpur Sentral
50470 Kuala Lumpur
tel: +603-2267 3633 (Gen)/ +603-2267 3628
Fax: +603-2274 7970 (Gen)/ +603-2272 1779
Email: norhizam@mida.gov.my
Website: www.mida.gov.my

Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC)


 

The Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) is a regional Asia-Pacific economic forum established in November 1989.

APEC consists of 21 members aims to create greater prosperity for the people of the Asia-Pacific region by promoting free trade and supporting a balanced, inclusive, sustainable economic growth and development in the Asia-Pacific region by aligning regulations and standards across the region.

Malaysia is one of the founding members of APEC in 1989 together with Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Indonesia, Japan, Republic of Korea, New Zealand, The Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and United States of America. Other APEC members include Chile, People’s Republic of China, Hong Kong China, Mexico, Papua New Guinea, Peru, Russia, Chinese Taipei and Vietnam.

The list of the 21 APEC members are as follows:-

APEC Members

 

Date of Joining APEC

 

 Australia

6-7 Nov 1989

 Brunei Darussalam

6-7 Nov 1989

 Canada

6-7 Nov 1989

 Chile

11-12 Nov 1994

 People’s Republic of China

12-14 Nov 1991

 Hong Kong, China

12-14 Nov 1991

 Indonesia

6-7 Nov 1989

 Japan

6-7 Nov 1989

 Republic of Korea

6-7 Nov 1989

 Malaysia

6-7 Nov 1989

 Mexico

17-19 Nov 1993

 New Zealand

6-7 Nov 1989

 Papua New Guinea

17-19 Nov 1993

 Peru

14-15 Nov 1998

 The Philippines

6-7 Nov 1989

 Russia

14-15 Nov 1998

 Singapore

6-7 Nov 1989

 Chinese Taipei

12-14 Nov 1991

 Thailand

6-7 Nov 1989

 United States of America

6-7 Nov 1989

 Vietnam

14-15 Nov 1998

( List of APEC Members in alphabetical order)

 

 

21 APEC Economies Members


Source : https://www.apec.org/About-Us/About-APEC


APEC – A Multilateral Economic Forum

 

APEC operates as a cooperative, multilateral economic and trade forum through open dialogue, Member economies participate on the basis of open dialogue and respect for views of all participants. In APEC, all economies have an equal say and decision-making is reached by consensus. There are no binding commitments or treaty obligations. Commitments are undertaken on a voluntary basis and capacity building projects through skills training and technological know-how to help members to implement APEC initiatives. APEC’s initiatives turn policy goals into concrete results and agreements into tangible benefits for the APEC members. Established in 1989, APEC economies account for 60 per cent of the world’s gross domestic product and 48 per cent of global trade.

APEC ensures that goods, services, investment and people move easily across borders among the 21 APEC members. Trades is facilitated by APEC’s members through speedy customs procedures at borders; more favorable business climates behind the border; and aligning regulations and standards across the region. Products can be easily exported with just one set of common standards across all economies following APEC’s initiatives to synchronize regulatory systems among the Asia-Pacific economies.

APEC works to assist all Asia-Pacific region to participate in the growing economy, i.e. to provide projects in digital skills training for rural communities and help indigenous women to export their products abroad. On the impacts of climate change, APEC members also increase energy efficiency and promote sustainable management of forest and marine resources. The forum also deal with new challenges to the region’s economic well-being, i.e. ensuring disaster resilience, planning for pandemics, and addressing terrorism.

APEC activities are centrally funded by annual contributions from APEC member economies presently totaling USD5 million. APEC Secretariat is based in Singapore. These contributions are used to support Secretariat and to fund various projects which support APEC’s economic and trade goals among the 21 APEC members.

Source : https://www.apec.org/About-Us/How-APEC-Operates

 

“Bogor Goals”- APEC’s Initiatives in 1994

One of APEC’s initiative in 1994 – “Bogor Goals” has assisted participating members economies to reduce trade barriers and promote free flow of goods and services between the 21 APEC economies. Due to Bogor Goals, tariff rates are lower and many sectors in Malaysia are open and has benefited due to foreign investment among the Asia-Pacific region. APEC economies play a big part in Malaysia as they account to more than 80% of Malaysia’s trade and 70% of foreign investment in Malaysia’s manufacturing sector.

 

Malaysia Host APEC 2020

Every year, the 21 APEC Member Economies will rotate and host the APEC Leader’s Meeting. The APEC host economy is responsible for chairing the annual Economic Leaders’ Meeting, selected ministerial meetings, senior officials’ meetings, the APEC Business Advisory Council and the APEC Study Centers Consortium. 

Malaysia will host this year APEC 2020. It will be the 31st Forum held since 1989. Malaysia last hosted the APEC meeting in 1998, with the theme “Strengthening the Foundations for Growth”.

Hosting APEC 2020, will once again put Malaysia in the international front besides showcase the many other aspects of Malaysia to the world.

Source : https://www.apec.org

 


APEC 2020 – Theme: “Optimizing Human Potential towards a Resilient Future of Shared Prosperity : Pivot. Prioritise. Progress”


Malaysia hosted this year, 27th APEC Leader’s Meeting on 20 November 2020. It is the first time ever in history, this meeting is held virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic across the world. Malaysia Prime Minister, YAB Tan Sri Muhyiddin bin Haji Muhammad Yassin chaired the 27th APEC Leader’s Meeting and participated by all 21 APEC Economic Leaders.

 

Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin bin Haji Muhammad Yassin chaired the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Economic Leader’s Meeting on 20 November 2020

 

This year APEC 2020 theme is “Optimising Human Potential Towards a Resilient Future of Shared Prosperity: Pivot. Prioritise. Progress”. The theme reflects the Asia Pacific region’s resilience, agility and inclusive economic growth through the concept of Shared Prosperity during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Malaysia has adopted the following 3P approach towards the challenges brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic:-

1.Pivot: To ensure that APEC work programmes respond promptly and effectively to the COVID-19 crisis;

2.Prioritise: To identify key meetings and events that must be held this year, which are essential for the advancement and realisation of Malaysia’s priority areas and targeted deliverables;

3.Progress: To embrace the new normal by convening all meetings in a virtual format.

 

Member Economies are urged to stay united in combating the pandemic and highlighting the need for an affordable, accessible and equitable access to the COVID-19 vaccine. APEC assumes a central role in spearheading post-pandemic economic recovery besides the progress APEC has made on trade and investment in the last three decades and the benefits it brings to the 21 economies in the Asia-Pacific region.

APEC’s Leaders pledged to work together to support the following priorities in:- Improving the narrative of trade and investment; Inclusive of Economic participation through digital economy and technology and Driving innovative and Inclusive sustainability for the 21 Member Economies.

 


2020 Kuala Lumpur Declaration

The APEC 2020 was successfully concluded by the 21 APEC Economic Leaders. The 2020 Kuala Lumpur Declaration and the APEC Putrajaya Vision 2040 was adopted at the APEC 2020 Economic Leader’s meeting on 20 November 2020.

 

21 APEC Economies Leaders at the 2020 Kuala Lumpur Declaration

 

The leaders of the 21 APEC member economies issued the Kuala Lumpur Declaration, recognizing the unprecedented challenges the region’s economies face amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. APEC’s Leaders pledged to work together to support the following 5 priorities as in:-

Combatting and mitigating the impacts of COVID-19 pandemic;
– Improving the narrative of trade and investment;
– Inclusive economic participation through digital economy and technology;
– Driving innovative and inclusive sustainability;
– Strengthening stakeholder engagement

For information on the 2020 Leaders’ Declaration, please log-in to:-
https://www.apec.org/Meeting-Papers/Leaders-Declarations/2020/2020_aelm

Source: https://www.apec.org

 


APEC Putrajaya Vision 2040

The APEC Putrajaya Vision 2040 was officially launched at the APEC 2020 Leader’s Meeting that will chart the future of the Asia-Pacific region. The APEC Putrajaya Vision 2040 aspires for an open, dynamic, resilient and peaceful Asia-Pacific community by 2040 for the prosperity of all its people and future generations.

Three key economic drivers to achieve this aspiration is “Trade and Investment”, “Innovation and Digitalisation” and “Strong, Balanced, Secure, Sustainable and Inclusive Growth”.
The next APEC Leader’s Meeting will be hosted by New Zealand in 2021.

For information on APEC Putrajaya Vision 2040, please log-in to:-

https://www.apec.org/Meeting-Papers/Leaders-Declarations/2020/2020_aelm/Annex-A

Source: https://www.apec.org


#MyAPEC 2020 Exhibition 

In conjunction with Malaysia as the host of Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) 2020, Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (MATRADE) organised the #MyAPEC2020 Exhibition which is the first-ever virtual exhibition held during the APEC meeting.

This exhibition is held from 1 September 2020 to 31 December 2020. The 4 months virtual exhibition will include online pitching, virtual one-to-one business meeting (eBizMatch) and webinars. The online exhibition is held in response to the rapid digitalisation around the world, catalysed by the restrictions and social distincing guidelines put in place from the COVID-19 pandemic around the world. The online platform provides Malaysia and other APEC economies, business opportunities to engage with foreign buyers and acts as a platform for to them to adapt to a virtual engagements.

The exhibition will feature Malaysian companies and exhibitors from all the APEC member economies. The exhibition will assist to increase business opportunities to all the exhibitors with 8 targeted sectors as follows:-

– Technology
– Innovative F&B and Agrofood
– Green Tech & Energy
– Healthcare
– Professional and Business Services
– Transport and Logistics
– Lifestyle
– Building Materials

 

The online exhibition has amassed over 6,000 registered viewers on the online platform in just under 2 months after its commencement. Since its launch on 1 September 2020, over 300 buyers from 51 economies have registered in the online platform, with the top 5 being Malaysia, Australia, Myanmar, Indonesia and Japan. The #MyAPEC2020 Exhibition is currently hosting over 300 companies comprising both Malaysian and international companies from APEC Member Economies.

The online exhibition platform also include 32 Business Pitching sessions been carried out showcasing companies from all the targeted sectors. Viewers were provided the opportunity to contact to the respective companies through real-time communications facilities during these sessions.

34 Virtual B2B Meetings have so far been arranged between exhibitors and local buyers from Malaysia as well as with foreign buyers from the USA, Japan, China, Australia, Saudi Arabia and Turkey, among others. The exhibition also hosts Webinars, having broadcasted 4 live presentations on key topics with chat features for participants to engage in Q&A.

Through this initiative, Malaysian exporters will be connected to international buyers that are interested to source product and services from Malaysia, arranged by 46 MATRADE overseas offices located all over the world.

For more information on #MyAPEC2020 Exhibition, please contact MATRADE at  Email: myapec2020@matrade.gov.my

Source: www.matrade.gov.my


MATRADE Contact Details

Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (MATRADE)
Menara MATRADE
Jalan Sultan Haji Ahmad Shah
50480 Kuala Lumpur
MALAYSIA
Tel: +603-6207 7077; Fax: +603-6203 7037
Email: info@matrade.gov.my
Website: www.matrade.gov.my

 

EXIM Bank – Building a Better Economy through Greater Trade Relations

 


Article by Puan Zabedah Giw, Advisory & Research, EXIM Bank

 

Malaysia has recorded a fair economic growth of 4.3% in 2019 (2018: 4.7%) as compared to the ASEAN peers with Vietnam and Indonesia taking a lead with growth recorded at 7% and 5% respectively. The region economic environment was affected by the on-going trade war and protectionism and geopolitical issues causing economic growth for the ASEAN 5 to record a lower growth of 4.8% (2018: 5.2%) then what’s achieved in the previous year. The year 2019 marked the extent of impact an economy faced with trade protectionism whilst globalization mooted as a way forward to prosper better growth leveraging on the economic capacity and phases of growth development. On the back of the challenging environment world trade has recorded a contraction of 3.14% for 2019 while on the regional performance ASEAN trade recorded a lower contraction at 1.97%.

In the current development, Malaysia economic performance for 2020 is expected to contract by 3.5% to 5.5%. Improvement in the business activity will be a gradual process as consumers are still reeling from the impact of COVID19 pandemic. On the contrary, the economy is projected to record a sturdy growth of 6.5 to 7.5% as highlighted in the recently announced National budget for 2021. This growth could be achieved with adequate capacity in production to support manufacturing activities and intensity in domestic spending.

Consequently, trade has been recognised as the formal means for exchange of goods and services on the back of monetary and economic consideration. Progress of the world trade will likely to create a deep economic integration among the major economies such as the US, China, India, Indonesia, Europe. Advancement in the trade activity will catalyst growth of a country’s manufacturing sector. The subsequent evolvement of the industry’s value add that forming part of the supply chain has provided diversity in country’s economic production. Advancement of the trade growth is likely to be achieved by having access to export market and appropriate financing in order to place the goods for international consumption. The progress of the global trade over GDP has been on the upward trend since.

 

Source: Worldbank, A&R MEXIM

 

Trade to Catalyst Growth

Malaysia economy is highly catalyst by export. As of 2018 the country’s export represents about 70% over GDP while the challenging environment due to the trade war has seen a lower ratio of 65.34 over the GDP in 2019. Key items that continue to lead Malaysia export to global market include electrical & electronics, mineral fuels, machinery & appliances, animal & vegetable fat and oils and medical equipment.

 

Source: DOSM, A&R MEXIM

Source: Trademap, A&R MEXIM

 

Trade activity has been an important element in driving a better economic growth for Malaysia. Contribution towards the GDP growth has been significant as Malaysia is ranked at 25th as global exporter while import at 26th place. Malaysia has been practicing an open economy and recorded an average export growth of 6.7% while import growth of 7.3% in the last 15 years. Trade balance has continued to remain in surplus much to the advantage of the country’s current account. Malaysia’s export grew by 13.6% yoy in September thanks to the robust growth recorded in electrical and electronics (E&E) products, rubber products, iron and steel products, as well as medical equipment. Additionally, agriculture goods also has registered a double-digit growth. Due to improvement in external demand, Malaysia’s export to major trading partner such as USA, China and Europe has recorded double digit growth of 22.1% yoy, 41.9% and 28.6% yoy respectively. Upside for a healthier growth is likely to be supported by effectiveness of the COVID19 vaccine and stability in the international market relations.

 

Source: DOSM, A&REXIM
To support greater trade performance especially on the part of export, investment and moving up the value chain of the Small Medium Enterprises (SMEs) to proceed rather significantly in order to meet global demand. Innovation largely need to take place among the SMEs in pursuit of efficiency and quality in production. Access to financing for working capital or requirement to purchase machineries and equipment in being part of the industry forward (4wd) could be widely facilitated.

 

Source: Trademap, A&R MEXIM

 

Moving forward, the government’s welcoming attitude towards foreign direct investment (FDI) in the production of high-value manufactured products, adequately available of skilled labour and highly diversified economy has popped numerous investment opportunities in Malaysia across wide range of sectors, including biotechnology, electronics, renewable and green energy, ICT, transportation and financial services.

The share of Malaysia top export products in the global trade indicates the strength of demand and size of the market these products are serving. It also spelt out the level of value chain these products present in the world key economies. Hence, this gives EXIM Bank the pointer in terms of requirement of trade financing for Malaysia industry sectors.

 

Strengthening of a Regional Cooperation in Asia

Regional integration and the strengthening of existing trade agreements with key partners will bolster trade flows in the long term. The disruption in the supply chain caused by the COVID19 pandemic has prompted manufacturers to diversify the supply chain connectivity throughout the world in an effort to stabilize continuity in production. On that note, the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) is expected to offer ample opportunity for Malaysia to expand exports in high value added goods. The materiality in signing of RCEP agreement will allow Malaysia, ASEAN member countries plus other Asian countries such as Japan, Korea, China, Australia, and New Zealand to form a sizeable trading market equivalent to one third of the world population. Establishment of this cooperation will bode well with Malaysia as a trading nation as probable advantage of this cooperation includes entry to a competitive route for local companies and manufacturers as highlighted by the official representatives.

Existence of Export Credit Agencies (ECAs) and trade credit insurance will complement this cooperation initiatives through appropriate access to financing for the exporters. Malaysia EXIM Bank could forge strategic partnership in trade financing, support for working capital, project and contract financing with other ECAs as well local financiers. Greater role in providing access to financing will mark and boost the role of ECAs in trade and economic mobility. Subsequently, mechanism in managing risk for international financing will adopt technology capability and the Internet of Things (IoT) as way forward in transforming the financial market.

 

Disclaimer:

The information and materials contained in this document are prepared for information purposes only and general in nature.  The research and information contained in this document are based on material compiled from data considered to be reliable at the time of writing.  However information and opinions expressed in the document should not be construed as a final consideration for any business and investment decision making.  EXIM Bank cannot be held responsible for any losses, whether direct or indirect as a result of using the information.  Unauthorized use of EXIM Bank logo, name and copyrights are strictly prohibited.


 

Contact details:

Export-Import Bank of Malaysia Berhad (EXIM Bank)
Level 1, EXIM Bank
Jalan Sultan Ismail
50250 Kuala Lumpur
MALAYSIA
Tel: +603-2601 2000; Fax: +603-2601 2100
Email: communications@exim.com.my
Website: www.exim.com.my

Country Feature: Argentina

A R G E N T I N A


Argentina Flag

Coat of arms

 

 

Argentina is located at the southern of the South America continent

 

Buenos Aires,  capital of Argentina


General Information

Capital and largest city: Buenos Aires

 

Geography: – Southern South America, bordering the South Atlantic Ocean, between Chile and Uruguay

-Second-largest country in South America (after Brazil)

Geographic coordinates: 34 00 S, 64 00 W

 

Head of Government:

 

 

President Alberto Angel FERNANDEZ  (since 10 December 2019);

Vice President Cristina FERNANDEZ DE KIRCHNER (since 10 December 2019)

Population: 45,479,118 (July 2020 est.)

 

Major urban areas – population: 15.154 million BUENOS AIRES (capital), 1.573 million Cordoba, 1.532 million Rosario, 1.173 million Mendoza, 986,000 San Miguel de Tucuman, 884,000 La Plata (2020)
Independence Day: 9 July 1816 (from Spain)
Language: Spanish (official), Italian, English, German, French, indigenous (Mapudungun, Quechua)
Religion: Nominally Roman Catholic 92% (less than 20% practicing), Protestant 2%, Jewish 2%, other 4%
Total Area:

Land:

Water:

2,780,400 sq km

2,736,690 sq km

43,710 sq km

Land boundaries: 11,968 kg

 

Border countries (5): Bolivia 942 km, Brazil 1263 km, Chile 6691 km, Paraguay 2531 km, Uruguay 541 km
Coastline: 4,989 km
Climate: Mostly temperate; arid in southeast; subantarctic in southwest
Natural resources: Fertile plains of the pampas, lead, zinc, tin, copper, iron ore, manganese, petroleum, uranium, arable land
Religions: Nominally Roman Catholic 92% (less than 20% practicing), Protestant 2%, Jewish 2%, other 4%
Major urban areas – population: 15.154 million BUENOS AIRES (capital), 1.573 million Cordoba, 1.532 million Rosario, 1.173 million Mendoza, 986,000 San Miguel de Tucuman, 884,000 La Plata (2020)

 

GDP (purchasing power parity):

GDP (official exchange rate):

GDP – real growth rate:

GDP – per capita (PPP):

GDP – composition,                                                    by sector of origin

 

 

$922.1 billion (2017 est.)

$637.6 billion (2017 est.)

-2.03% (2019 est.)

$20,900 (2017 est.)

-agriculture: 10.8% (2017 est.)

-industry: 28.1% (2017 est.)

-services: 61.1% (2017 est.)

 

Agriculture – products: Sunflower seeds, lemons, soybeans, grapes, corn, tobacco, peanuts, tea, wheat; livestock
Industries: Food processing, motor vehicles, consumer durables, textiles, chemicals and petrochemicals, printing, metallurgy, steel
Life expectancy at birth:

Total population:

Male:

Female:

 

77.8 years

74.7 years

81.1 years (2020 est.)

 

National holiday: Revolution Day

(May Revolution Day,25 May (1810)

Currency: Argentine Peso (ARS)
International Country Code: +54
Internet Country Code: .ar
 Time Zone: GMT-3

 

Source

1.  CIA World Factbook, South America: Argentina – 

https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/ar.html

 2. The World Bank, Argentina Overview – https://www.worldbank.org/en/country/argentina/overview#1

 


 

Argentina, officially the Argentine Republic, is the second-largest country in South America (after Brazil) located in the mostly southern half of South America.  Sharing the bulk of the Southern Cone with Chile to the west, the country is also bordered by Bolivia and Paraguay to the north, Brazil to the northeast, Uruguay and the South Atlantic Ocean to the east, and the Drake Passage to the south. 

With a mainland area of 2,780,400 km2 (1,073,500 sq mi), Argentina is the eighth-largest country in the world, the fourth largest in the Americas and the largest Spanish-speaking nation by area.  Argentina is subdivided into twenty-three provinces  and one autonomous cityBuenos Aires, which is the federal capital of the nation. The provinces and the capital have their own constitutions, but exist under a federal system. Argentina claims sovereignty over part of Antarctica, the Falkland Islands , and South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands.

Argentina benefits from rich natural resources, a highly literate population, an export-oriented agricultural sector, and a diversified industrial base. Although one of the world’s wealthiest countries 100 years ago, Argentina suffered during most of the 20th century from recurring economic crises, persistent fiscal and current account deficits, high inflation, mounting external debt, and capital flight.

In 2017, Argentina’s economy emerged from recession with GDP growth of nearly 3.0%. The government passed important pension, tax, and fiscal reforms. And after years of international isolation, Argentina took on several international leadership roles, including hosting the World Economic Forum on Latin America and the World Trade Organization Ministerial Conference, and is set to assume the presidency of the G-20 in 2018.

Argentina is one of the largest economies in Latin America with a Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of approximately US$450 billion.

Argentina has vast natural resources in energy and agriculture. Within its 2.8 million square kilometers of territory, Argentina is endowed with extraordinary fertile lands, gas and lithium reserves, and has great potential for renewable energy. It is a leading food producer with large-scale agricultural and livestock industries.  In addition, Argentina has significant opportunities in some manufacturing subsectors, and innovative services in high tech industries.

However, the historical volatility of economic growth and the accumulation of institutional obstacles have impeded the country’s development. The COVID.-19 pandemic and social isolation as a way to combat it aggravated the situation. Urban poverty in Argentina remains high and in the first semester it reached 40,9% of population, while extreme poverty increased to 10,5% and children poverty rose  to 56,3%.

After two years of recession and strong economic weaknesses, the impact of COVID-19 has been significant in Argentina.  To counteract the impacts of the crisis, the Government has implemented a package of emergency measures to protect the most vulnerable groups and help companies during the social isolation. This program has a  high fiscal cost, which is expected to bring the fiscal deficit in 2020 to more than 10% of GDP (the highest in more than three decades).

Domestic economy continues to show strong macroeconomic imbalances. Annual inflation, although it has slowed since the beginning of the year, is still above 40%, despite price controls.

The Government has managed to conclude the process of restructuring all its debt in foreign currency (both local and external), significantly improving the maturity profile for the next eight years. In turn, the authorities have formally begun to talk with the International Monetary Fund to agree a new program for the maturities of the Stand-By loan in the next 3 years.

Source:- 

1.  CIA World Factbook, South America: Argentina – 

https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/ar.html

 2. The World Bank, Argentina Overview – https://www.worldbank.org/en/country/argentina/overview#1


 

(1)  MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina:

       Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in

       the New Normal” on 14 October 2020


 

The Embassy of the Argentine Republic in Malaysia in collaboration with The Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) Malaysia,  Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (MATRADE), Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA) and The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, International Trade and Worship, Argentina jointly organised a webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal“. 

 

The objectives of the webinar were:-

(1) To promote trade and investment opportunities between Malaysia and Argentina.

(2) To provide an update on the current market situation due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

This webinar was hosted by Madam Nor Hasnah Badroddin, Senior Director, Bilateral Economic and Trade Relations Division, MITI, Malaysia.

 

The following 4 sessions were held at the webinar which included – 

Session 1: Introductory Remarks

(1) Mr Hairil Yahri Yaacob

     Deputy Secretary General of Trade

     Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI), Malaysia

(2) H.E. Ambassador Carola Ramon-Berjano

     Undersecretary of Multilateral and Bilateral Economic Negotiations

     Argentine Foreign Ministry

 

Session 2: Establishing Regional Footprints Through Investment

(1)  Strategies and Opportunities to Invest in Argentina

      Mr Federico Cetrangolo

      Director for the Promotion of Investments

      Argentina Foreign Ministry

(2)  Malaysia as Your Global Supply Hub

      Mr Sikh Shamsul Ibrahim Sikh Abdul Majid

      Director of foreign Investment Promotion

      Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA)

 

Session 3: Argentina-Malaysia Bilateral Relations and

                     Trade Opportunities

(1)  H.E. Ambassador Pablo Sivori

       Undersecretary of Trade Promotion and Investments

       Argentine Foreign Ministry

(2)  The Malaysian Market: Insights and Opportunities

       for Argentine Products

       H.E. Ambassador Manuel Balaguer Salas

       Ambassador of the Argentine Republic to Malaysia

(3)  The Argentina Market: Insights and Opportunities

       for Malaysian Products

       Mr Wan Ahmad Tarmizi

       Trade Commissioner of MATRADE Santiago

       Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (MATRADE)

 

Session 4: Panel Session

Mr Abu Bakar Koyakutty, Senior Director for Exports Promotion & Market Access, Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (MATRADE) moderated this session.

 


(1)  “Strategies and Opportunities to Invest in Argentina”

        by Mr Federico Cetrangolo, Director for the Promotion

         of Investments, Argentina Foreign Ministry 


 

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)  

 

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)  

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)  

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)  

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)  

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)  

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)  

 

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)  

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)  

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)  

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)  

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)  

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)  

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)  


 

 2.  “Making Malaysia as Your Regional Operations Hub” 

       by Mr Sikh Shamsul Ibrahim Sikh Abdul Majid, Director

      of  Foreign Investment Promotion,  Malaysian Investment

      Development Authority (MIDA) 


(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)  

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

 

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)


 

3.  “The Malaysian Market: Insights and Opportunities for 

     Argentine Products” by H.E. Ambassador Manuel Balaguer

     Salas, Ambassador of the Argentine Republic to Malaysia


(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

4.  Argentine products with potential to be exported to Malaysia

 

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)


5.  “The Argentina Market: Insights and Opportunities for

     Malaysian Products” by Mr Wan Ahmad Tarmizi, Trade

     Commissioner of MATRADE Santiago, Malaysia External

     Trade Development Corporation (MATRADE)


(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

 

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

 

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

 

(Source: MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020)

 

Source:

1.MATRADE webinar on “Malaysia and Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investments in the New Normal” on 14 October 2020.


Contact Details

Ministry of Foreign Affairs
International Trade and Worship
ARGENTINA
Email: info@cancilleria.gob.ar
Website: cancilleria.gob.ar/en

 

Embassy of the Argentine Republic in Malaysia
H.E. Manuel Balaguer Salas
Ambassador of the Argentine Republic to Malaysia
16th Floor, Menara Keck Seng
203, Jalan Bukit Bintang
55100 Kuala Lumpur
MALAYSIA
Tel: +603-2144 1451 ; Fax: +603-2144 1428
Email: comercial_emsia@mrecic.gov.ar; comercial2_emsia@mrecic.gov.ar
Website: emsia.cancilleria.gob.ar

 

Mr Wan Ahmad Tarmizi Wan Idris
Trade Commissioner
MATRADE Santiago
Commercial Section (MATRADE)
Embassy of Malaysia
Oficina 302, Edificio Malasia
187, Las Condes
Santiago
CHILE
Tel: +52 55 5201 4540
Email: santiago@matrade.gov.my; tarmizi@matrade.gov.my
Website: www.matrade.gov.my

 

Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA)
MIDA Central
No. 5, Jalan Stesen Sentral 5
Kuala Lumpur Sentral
50470 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: +603-2267 3633
Fax: +603-2274 7970
Email: investmalaysia@mida.gov.my
Website: www.mida.gov.my

Editorial

 

Greetings from MASSA !

2020 had given us a tumultuous start to the decade. As 2020 comes to a close we see that the Covid-19 pandemic remains a disruptive force for every market including Malaysia. However, along with this disruption we see a myriad of opportunities that may be beneficial to enterprising businesses as well.

MASSA hopes to bring to members attention, events and programmes that can be informative and useful to help you and your businesses take advantage of the initiatives and opportunities that come available. 

In this newsletter, we report on two webinars organised by MITI & MATRADE. They were (1) “Malaysia & Argentina: Strengthening Bilateral Trade & Investment in the New Normal” and (2) “Reconnect: Hong Kong-Malaysia Partnership” jointly organised by the Commerce and Economic Development Bureau of the Hong Kong SAR Government and the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) Malaysia. We have distilled some key takeaways which may be helpful to catalyse your business interests abroad.

Our appreciation is extended to EXIM Bank for their insightful article on “Building a Better Economy through Greater Trade Relations”. We also thank MIDA for their article on the Malaysia Lighthouse Program, which is an innovative initiative that incentivises digitalisation for manufacturers. In lieu of the successful and momentous APEC Malaysia 2020, which culminated in the signing of the Putrajaya Vision 2040, we have an article to inform our membership on APEC, and the opportunities and benefits for investment, partnership and business that come with it.

We can look forward to 2021 with RCEP progressively taking effect and, the fruits of APEC 2020 coming onstream, especially Putrajaya Vision 2040 influencing the outlook for the coming years. Furthermore, on the calendar of 2021 is EXPO 2020 Dubai, which will be hosted at the Dubai Exhibition Centre, UAE from 1 October 2021 to 31 March 2022. The EXPO will host the world for 6 months, including Malaysia at the Malaysia Pavilion.

An event in the near horizon is MASSA postponed webinar on “Business Opportunities in the Republic of Guinea”. We are pleased to inform our members that steps have been taken to arrange for this webinar to be held in Q1 2021, so stay tuned for further news to come!

Finally, as we close 2020, we want to thank our members, contributors, and collaborators for their continued support throughout this year. MASSA remains committed to present to members, trade and investment leads from the South-South countries, especially in light of the pandemic ushering an increased need for collaborative efforts at all levels and on the digital platform. To that end, several events to keep an eye out for are in the works. We look forward to your participation in these pro-business, digital-forward events in the coming year.

We wish all members and readers, a happy new year 2021, stay safe and keep well in these Covid-19 days.

Thank you.

 
Ng Su Fun
Editorial MASSA

President’s Message

Tan Sri Azman Hashim
President
MASSA


 

 

Greetings and Best Wishes for 2021!

2020 was an extraordinarily unprecedented year of trials and challenges. The Covid-19 pandemic curtailed the global economy. The swift downward economic spiral as a result of containment measures created demand and supply shocks which added to the challenges of losing lives and livelihoods. It has been 10 months since the pandemic was declared. Governments across the globe resorted to expansive stimulus measures to contain the economic fallout from further deterioration.

The Malaysian economy contracted by 8.3% in the first half of 2020 with a decline of 17.1% in the second quarter. For the year 2020, our economy is expected to contract by 4.5%. The stimulus packages effected by our Government namely, Prihatin, PrihatinPKS+, the National Economic Recovery Plan (Penjana) and KITA Prihatin, totalling RM305 billion is anticipated to help our economy recover with its spillover effects into 2021.

GDP growth for 2021 is projected to rebound to between 6.5% and 7.5%. This will be supported by strong economic fundamentals from a well diversified economy. However, this favourable outlook will hinge on 2 major factors, i.e. the successful containment of the pandemic and a sustained recovery in external demand.

This pandemic accelerated the push for businesses to go digital. This move online was imperative for businesses to stay afloat. There was an acceleration of learning, relearning, adapting and innovating with the pivot to the online world through the use of technology. In many ways 2020 has been a reset year. We must use this momentum to drive lasting change in the way we do business and the way we will live.

I would like to congratulate our Government for two very significant outcomes in the recent months, achieved inspite of unprecedented challenges the region faced amidst the Covid-19 pandemic. The signing of the RCEP on 15 November 2020 by our Prime Minister, YAB Muhyiddin bin Haji Muhammad Yassin together with 14 other Heads of Government was a very significant step to integrate three major economic blocs of Asean, Northeast Asia and Australia and New Zealand, bringing major benefits to all member countries. This RCEP represents the world’s largest Free Trade Agreement, covering 30% of the world’s gross domestic product and world population, and 27% of the world’s total trade value in 2019. Since the beginning of the initiation for the formation of the RCEP, the East Asia Business Council (EABC) represented the views of the Private Sector and EABC actively promoted and presented their recommendations at each and every annual meeting of the Leaders of ASEAN and the Plus 3 (China, Japan, Korea). EABC (Malaysia Chapter) of which I am Chairman is a consistent and persistent supporter of the RCEP.

Our Government hosted the 27th APEC leader’s meeting in 20 November 2020, through a first ever virtual meeting platform, chaired by our Prime Minister. The leaders of the 21 APEC member countries successfully concluded the meeting with the issuance of 2 landmark documents, namely the Leader’s Kuala Lumpur Declaration and the launch of the APEC Putrajaya Vision 2040. The 21 leaders pledged to work together to support priorities to combat and mitigate the impact of COVID-19, implore the narrative of trade and investments, strive for an inclusive economic participation through digital economy and technology, drive innovative and inclusive sustainability whilst strengthening stakeholder engagement.

The APEC Putrajaya Vision 2040 will chart the future of the region, envisioning an open dynamic, resilient and peaceful Asia-Pacific community by 2040 for the prosperity of all the people and future generations. Just like the Bogor Goals 2020 before it, the Putrajaya Vision 2040 will be a feature at every annual Leaders’ Meetings of APEC until 2040. A great image for Putrajaya and Malaysia!

These two events will position Malaysia to be at the centre of a dynamic economic region that is expected to grow exponentially. As private sector businesses, we must grasp this opportunity to strengthen our export competitiveness and efficiency and enlarge our market share in all our lines of business.

Going forward we can expect challenging economic headwinds in 2021 as we endeavour to recover from the economic crisis of 2020.  Let us all move forward together with a renewed mindset and embrace the transition to adapt lifelong learning, unlearning and be receptive to new ways of developing and undertaking new businesses.

I appreciate the continuing support and cooperation of all members, especially my fellow Executive Committee members with your attendance and participation at our regular meetings and your generous contributions.

I also wish to thank all our supporters who have contributed valuable and insightful articles to our Newsletter for 2020.

I wish everyone a happy, healthy and successful 2021.

 

Tan Sri Azman Hashim
President
MASSA

Diary of Events

(1)  29 June 2020

     – MASSA 29th Annual General Meeting


Tan Sri Azman Hashim, President of MASSA convened the Twenty-Ninth (29th) Annual General Meeting (AGM) of MASSA at the Boardroom, 26th Floor, Bangunan Ambank Group, Jalan Raja Chulan, Kuala Lumpur.

In order to comply with the Government’s and/or relevant authorities’ directives and guidelines on public gatherings, meetings and events, arising from the measures to combat the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic during the Recovery Movement Control Order, the  MASSA 29th AGM was convened via a hybrid of in-person as well as virtual participation.

The President of MASSA welcomed members and Committee members and proceed with the business of the AGM. 

 

Tan Sri Azman Hashim, President of MASSA chairing the MASSA 29th Annual General Meeting on 29 June 2020

Tan Sri Azman Hashim delivered his address and the meeting proceeded to unanimously adopt the Annual Report and the audited accounts of the Association for the year ended 31st December 2019.

(left to right) Ms Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary MASSA, Tan Sri Azman Hashim, President MASSA and Tan Sri Datuk Tee Hock Seng, JP, Honorary Treasurer MASSA attending the 29th AGM of MASSA

 

Cover of MASSA Annual Report 2019 – 2020

President’s Statement in the MASSA Annual Report 2019 – 2020

The President thanked the Executive Committee and Office Bearers for their continuing support and MASSA members for their participation in MASSA events and activities.

Datuk T Y Lee, Honorary Secretary MASSA attending the MASSA AGM online

 

(left) Tan Sri Datuk Tee Hock Seng, JP and (right) Dato’ J. Jegathesan

(left to right) Dato’ Kuah Lai Huat, Ms Ng Su Fun and Tan Sri Azman Hashim

 

(left) Dato’ J. Jegathesan and (right) Dato’ Aziz Bahaman

 

(left) Mr Kuah Wen Tu and (right) Dato’ Moehamad Izat bin Achmad Habechi Emir

 

(right) Tan Sri Datuk Tee Hock Seng, JP having a discussion with (left) Dato’ Kuah Lai Huat

 


(2)  28 July 2020

      – Webinar on “How Drones are Changing the

        Business World”


The Selangor Human Resources Development Centre in partnership with Drone Academy Asia, Malaysia South-South Association (MASSA) and Malaysia-Japan Economic Association (MAJECA) hosted a webinar which was attended by various members from MASSA and MAJECA.  MASSA and MAJECA was represented by Ms Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary of MASSA and MAJECA. 

The title of the webinar – ‘How Drones are Changing the Business World’, was directed at increasing awareness about the potential benefits of using drone technology to aid business to achieve sustainability and weathering the ‘new normal’.

34 participants from members of MASSA and MAJECA together with MITI, USM, SIRIM, MPOB, MIGHT, MIMOS as well as representatives from Bangladesh-Malaysia Chamber of Commerce & Industry (BMCCI) and JAGAM members attended the webinar.  

 

The Speakers at the webinar were:

1)  Mr. Alvin Tan, Manager from the Drone Academy Asia

2) Mr. Ken Khoo, Head of Marketing from Poladrone

 

Ms Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary of MASSA gave a Welcome Address at the start of the webinar.

 


Ms Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary of MASSA giving the Welcome Address at the webinar

 

The presentation of Mr Alvin Tan, Manager of Drone Academy Asia, an enterprise drones training academy centred on the webinar’s theme. He is a firm believer in the usage of drones and is enthusiastic in the capabilities and application of drones in the 21st century and aims to co-develop and deliver drone course modules that empower participants to implement them into their workflow for greater efficiency and safety practices.

 

 

Mr Alvin Tan, Manager of Drone Academy Asia sharing on the commercial applications of drone technology

 

Mr Ken Khoo, Head of Marketing from Poladrone, an all-in-one drone solutions provider spoke about ‘Sustainability & Saving Lives: Drone in the New Normal”.  Poladrone’s goal is to create greater awareness and conversations about the ways drones can be used to enrich our everyday lives, both personally & professionally.

 

 

Mr Ken Khoo, Head of Marketing of Poladrone, giving his presentation on the role of drones, and how they enable sustainable industrial workflows

 

(from top left, clockwise) Mr Ken Khoo – Poladrone, Mr Alvin Tan – Drone Academy Asia, Ms Khoo Yi Lin – SHRDC, Ms Erin Hoo – Drone Academy Asia and, Ms Ng Su Fun – representing MASSA and MAJECA

 


 

(3) 26 August 2020 – Webinar on Cloud Computing:

       “The Best Time to Leverage on Cloud Technology:

       Take Your Business to Greater Heights”  


 

Malaysia South-South Association (MASSA) in collaboration with Malaysia-Japan Economic Association (MAJECA), Alphaus Cloud and Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) hosted a webinar on Cloud Computing which was attended by various members from MASSA and MAJECA.  MASSA and  MAJECA was represented by Ms Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary of MASSA and MAJECA. 

 

The webinar was entitled ‘The Best Time to Leverage on Cloud Technology: Take Your Business to Greater Heights’.  This non-technical webinar aimed to equip decision-makers to use cloud technology for their business growth by optimizing the technology to their needs.

The Speakers at the webinar were:

1.Mr Mohd Atasha Alias, Director of Alphaus Cloud Sdn Bhd

2.Mr Tan Tze Meng, Head of Cloud and Data Centers at MDEC

 

Ms Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary of MASSA gave a Welcome Address at the start of the webinar.

 


Ms Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary of MASSA giving the Welcome Address at the webinar

 

Mr Mohd Atasha Alias, Director of Alphaus Cloud,  a leading software provider of Cloud Cost Management in Japan was invited to speak.  Alphaus Cloud Sdn Bhd is a company founded in Malaysia, and it is from this business base that it is expanding across the Asia Pacific. He advises business leaders on how to thrive in the Digital Era, and helps business transform digitally from ‘brick and mortar’ to ‘click and mortar’ by leveraging his myriad connections along the digital value-chain of tools and services.

Mr Atasha’s presentation centred on answering the question – ‘What is Cloud’, and he also argued for cloud’s adoption as part of the new entrepreneurial mindset.

 


Mr Mohd Atasha Alias, Director of Alphaus Cloud introducing cloud technology and arguing the case for adopting it

 

The second speaker was Mr Tan Tze Meng.  He presented the comparison of advantages using Cloud technology vs. on-premise infrastructure and the total cost of ownership for decision-makers.

Mr Tan has been in the IT industry since 1986, and has an extensive portfolio in this field. His beginnings can be traced to his time at Telekom Malaysia, where he played a key role in launching TMNet in 1996.  Mr Tan is the Head of Cloud and Data Centers at MDEC.  His department is responsible for the ecosystem development in the digital economy for Malaysia.

 


MDEC’s Head of Cloud and Data Centers, Mr Tan Tze Meng’s case for adopting cloud technology by presenting the comparisons of the total cost of ownership for an IT project using cloud technology versus on-premise infrastructure

 

After the presentations, the webinar held a series of polls, followed by a Q&A session moderated by Ms Rishanty Navaratnam of Alphaus Cloud.

 

To cap off the webinar, a virtual group photo session was held with the Speakers, the webinar’s team and the audience

Group photos of participants

 

The webinar’s team (from left to right) Mr Mohd Atasha Alias – Alphaus Cloud, the MASSA-MAJECA team, Ms Rishanty Navaratnam – Alphaus Cloud and Mr Tan Tze Meng – MDEC

 

MARDI Essential Oil Distillation Systems: A Large-Scale Extraction Technology For Producing Flavour And Fragrance Materials


Article by:

Dr. Norma Hussin
Senior Research Officer
IC – Industrial Crop Research Centre
MARDI Headquarters


The Essential Oils

Essential Oil

 

Most of the aromatic crops contain aroma subtances in the plant cells and, its normally known as essential oil. These aroma materials can be derived from plants and animal parts that have been used since many decades by global flavour and fragrance (F&F) industries to produce flavours, essential oils, concretes, absolutes and perfume materials. Essential oils are the famous ancient materials especially for producing perfumery, medicines and aroma materials; and starting in year 1930, a new era of aroma chemical material is manufactured, synthesized and fractionated from aromatic substances. Nowadays, essential oils are very important in our life-styles and wellness; and most of the essential oils can be used as value added in the F&F blending as speciality aroma in foods, beverages, confectioneries, traditional medicines, nutraceuticals, cosmeceuticals and even pharmaceuticals.

 

Essential Oil Notes as an Arts of Perfumery Blending

Perfumery is an art of blending; it is a combination of aroma notes known as top, middle and base notes (Table 1).

Table 1.  Natural aroma materials and note classifications

 

Essential Oils/

Aroma Materials

Perfumery Notes
Limes Top notes
Oranges Top notes
Citronella Top notes
Ylang-ylang Middle notes
Roses Middle notes
Jasmine Middle notes
Patchouli Base notes
Sandalwood Base notes
Vertiver Base notes
Agarwoods Base notes

Most of the citrus materials presenting a high aromatic essential oil that are classified as top notes. Meanwhile floral materials presenting a mild aroma volatile and classified as base notes. A long-lasting aroma material that can contribute for a long-lasting aroma with a characterising of deep, strong balsamic and woody are commonly contributed by woods and some leafy parts. They are usually produced by agarwoods, sandalwoods, cedarwoods, patchouli and vertivers and having a strong perfumery note as base notes. Patchouli is a base note and act as fixative material in the perfumery. Natural and aromatherapy perfumes can be formulated and designed by perfumers by combinations of these three notes (base, middle and top notes) with a master skill to present a harmony aromatic perfumes or aromatherapy blending.

Patchouli Essential Oil

In Malaysia the most unique and valuable aromatic crops are Patchouli, locally known as Nilam. Dried patchouli plants are traditionally used in the past by Malaysian and Indonesian to protect batik or clothes in the cabinets from insects besides giving aroma to the clothes. The Patchouli is an aromatic herb contains essential oil and having a very unique and natural aromatic derived from its essential oil substances. Patchouli essential oil (PEO) is one of the most popular perfumery materials and perform high demand in world-wide trades as fixative materials for fragrance and cosmetic formulations. PEO is very unique and its chemical components cannot be synthesized. PEO is suitable for a masculine perfumery ingredient and possesses a fixative material in the perfumery blending. Patchouli has been suggested by Malaysian Agricultural Research and Development Institute (MARDI) for farmers and entrepreneur programmes due to its essential oil is highly expensive and high demand in global for flavour and fragrance (F&F) industries.

 

Helping Farmers and Industries

Malaysia is currently focused in planting aromatic crops for helping farmers and industries for these new sectors of manufacturing of flavour and fragrance (F&F) products. However, the cost of productions is higher than Indonesian and Thailand essential oils. In this case, some affords are focused for business plans such as conducting courses and training several farmers, entrepreneurs and industries in producing essential oil base products such as aromatherapy, soap, bath gel, shampoo, cosmetics, perfumery and insect repellent products.

 

Essential Oil Plants

In Malaysia, essential oil distillers are locally built for specific industrial production needs and specialty ingredients. In Table 2, some of the distiller type and location of essential oil distillers are scattered in Malaysia. Besides distillers, there are many types of high-tech systems are set-up for processing aromatic extracts that can be found in MARDI, FRIM, universities and private companies such as fractionation systems (molecular distillations), agarwood conventional distillers, vanilla extractors, sub-critical gas extractors, and supercritical CO2 extractors found in Malaysia.

 

Table 2. Lists of Essential Oil distiller and Extractor in Malaysia

Distiller type Locations Essential oil/aroma materials/extracts
Steam distillation MARDI Station at Kuala Linggi, equipped with 10 units of 100L Industrial scale and a batch type hydro-distillation of 100L scale. Various aromatic crops(1)
Steam and hydrodistillation units MARDI Headquarters Serdang, equipped with 2 units of 300L Industrial scales and a batch type hydro-distillation of 100L scale. Various aromatic crops(1)
Hydrodistillation Industrial crop research centre, MARDI Serdang Selangor Agarwoods, leafy and floral types
Steam distillation Forest Research Institutes Malaysia, FRIM Various aromatic crops
Steam distillation Universities (IBD-UTM, UMP and other universities) Various aromatic crops
Distillation Melaka Biotech, Melaka Various aromatic crops
Hydrodistillation Kedai Agarwood Sdn. Bhd. Pahang equipped with 10 rounded semi-vessels of 12L hydrodistillation system. Agarwoods
KKTM, Lenggong, Perak A modern distillation system Various aromatic crops

MARDI Industrial Scale Essential Oil Distiller

A local essential oils

 

The local essential oils are produced using an industrial scale steam distiller system (Essential oil incubator) located at MARDI Station Kuala Linggi, Masjid Tanah Melaka, Malaysia.  A Standard Operation Procedures (SOP) for essential oil productions of Patchouli (Nilam), Lemongrass (Serai makan), Citronellal (Serai wangi), Cinnamon (Kayu manis), Lemon myrtle, Kaffir Lime (Limau purut), Kasturi lime (Limau Kasturi) and other aromatic crops are successfully established by MARDI (See Table 3).

 

Table 3.

List of the essential oils and aroma materials produced by MARDI

 

Essential oil (1) Selected Aroma Marker Perfumery notes
Cinnamon leaf oil Cinnamic aldehyde, Eugenol Middle note
Citronella oil Citronellal and Geraniol Top note
Lemongrass oil Citrals (Neral and Gernial) Top note
Ylang-ylang oil (a) Linalool Middle note
Jasmine (b) Linalool Middle note
Gaharu (c) Sesquiterpenes (Agarospirols, hinesols etc.) Base note
Lemon myrtle Citrals(Neral and Gernial) Top note
Kaffir lime Citronellal and limonene Top note
Nilam (Patchouli) Patchouli alcohol and other sesquiterpenes Base note

 

a  Distillation process using a10L aluminium distillation vessel (lab scale)
b  Concrete and absolute materials (lab scale)
c  Essential oils and resinoids (lab scale)

Citronella, Nilam and Lemon myrtle (as speciality industrial crops) are the most popular crops and farmers should be followed the Standard Operation Procedures (SOP) as recommended by MARDI.

 

Essential Oil Products

 

Essential Oil Products

Essential oils can be added as natural fragrance materials into several wellness, Spa and food products as follows:
a. Blended aromatherapy,
b. Aromatherapy perfumes,
c. Fine fragrances,
d. Soap,
e. Bath gel,
f. Shampoos,
g. Massage and Spa Products,
h. Cosmetics,
i. Insect repellent,
j. Foods and Beverages, and
k. Confectioneries

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


MARDI Headquarters

Malaysian Agricultural Research and Development Institute (MARDI) 
MARDI Headquarters 
Persiaran MARDI-UPM 
43400 Serdang 
Selangor 
Tel: +603-8953 6000 
Fax: +603-8953 6011
Email: enquiry@mardi.gov.my 
Website: www.mardi.gov.my

 

Contact of Dr. Norma Hussin
Senior Research Officer 
IC – Industrial Crop Research Centre  
MARDI Headquarters

Tel: +603-8953 6000 Ext. 6234 
Email: normahus@mardi.gov.my